DOD puts JEDI under CIO leadership

In a June 22 memo, Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan ordered DOD’s massive commercial cloud acquisition fall under new CIO Dana Deasy.

locked cloud in a bubble
 

The Defense Department has confirmed that new CIO Dana Deasy has taken control of the department's cloud initiatives, including the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure cloud program.

June 22 memo from Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan announced that Deasy would lead “several efforts” that are “a crucial part of overall digital modernization.”

Shanahan also directed the DOD chief management officer, along with the CIO and general counsel, “prepare a prompt and orderly transition of authority, direction, and control of the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure Cloud Initiative to the CIO, including transitioning the cloud computing program office to the Office of the CIO.”

The cloud executive steering group leading the JEDI procurement was most recently managed by Chris Lynch, director of the Defense Digital Service. The steering group relied on the CIO as an adviser, but the Pentagon's top tech official was not a full voting member of the group. That changed in January, and opposition to the DOD's single-award strategy hardened in some quarters of the federal contracting community as the year wore on.

The release of the memo follows a public DOD statement issued in late June announcing that Deasy, who took office in May, would lead all the department’s cloud initiatives. Shanahan also directed all DOD components “afford Mr. Deasy every opportunity to advise on cloud computing issues,” according to the memo.

“The best practice from industry is to manage these efforts at the enterprise level, rather than the current ad hoc process, in order to enable economies of scale, improve security practices and maintain the ability to make smarter decisions about applications and data,” Shanahan wrote.

But even with the new details, DOD doesn’t have a timeline for the release of the JEDI request for proposal, which was initially expected in May. As of now, DOD is still reviewing the JEDI final RFP with no specific timeline on when it would be released, DOD spokesperson Heather Babb told FCW via email.

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